Posted by: Joe Palmer | August 20, 2009

Does the Bible forbid drinking Alcohol?


Does the Bible Forbid Drinking Alcohol

By Joe Palmer

A couple people have asked me if I have reached a conclusion on this topic. I reached a personal conclusion years ago, “I don’t drink.” I have never had a beer. I have tried a little wine in curiosity. After tasting some of these products once I came to a shocking conclusion. It doesn’t taste good. I think you have to acquire a taste for it. The stuff that tastes good is covered up by so much juice and other products to give it a good taste. I decided to drink the good tasting stuff and leave out the alcohol.

That is the problem for some people and defines the issue for some people. They want the alcohol. Many people use alcohol as a pain killer. It masks the pain of divorce, business failure, guilt, abuse, and self doubt. People want the alcohol to fit in, to relax, to unwind after a stressful day. Now if alcohol was harmless then that would be fine but it is not harmless it is very dangerous.

Some won’t be satisfied that God calls it…
a mocker, Proverbs 20:1
a brawler Proverbs 20:1
Unwise Proverbs 20:1

It not enough for some to say that…
the Old Testaments forbid the use of alcoholic wine Proverbs 23:31

Hosea said, “Wine enslaves the heart.” Hosea 4:11 But, some want a prohibition.

I want to share a text with you that some scholars say is a prohibition. Ephesians 5:18 “Do not be drunk with wine, where is excess, but be filled with the Spirit.”

You may immediately note that the text only mentions drunkenness. However, my research has lead me to learn some information about the word drunk.

Drunk, (-en, be), Drunkard, Drunkenness [Verb]

methusko signifies “to make drunk, or to grow drunk” (an inceptive verb, marking the process or the state expressed in methuo), “to become intoxicated,” Luke 12:45; Eph 5:18; 1 Thess 5:7.

Many take “drunk” to mean totally smashed. But when the Bible condemns drunkenness it doesn’t say that one has to be falling down, pulling up the grass and vomiting in the front yard to qualify as drunk.

2. In fact, the Greek word translated “drunk” in Eph. 5: 18 means “to begin to be drunk.” The word is methusko, which is related to the usual word for drunk, which is methuo. The difference between methusko and methuo is subtle but important.

a. Methuo refers to the state or condition of drunkenness.

b. Methusko refers to the action or process that leads to drunkenness. Methusko:

“an inceptive [as in inception or beginning,] verb, marking the process of the state expressed [by methuo]”

Vines Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words

“To begin to be softened”

Young’s Analytical Concordance

——————————————————————————–

B1. Drunk, (-en, be), Drunkard, Drunkenness [Adjective]

methusos “drunken” (cp. methusko), is used as noun, in the singular, in 1 Cor 5:11, and in the plural, in 1 Cor 6:10, “drunkard,” “drunkards.”

——————————————————————————–

C1. Drunk, (-en, be), Drunkard, Drunkenness [Noun]

methe “strong drink” (akin to methu, “wine,” see under methuo, above), denotes “drunkenness, habitual intoxication,” Luke_21:34; Rom_13:13; Gal_5:21.

As you can see fromt he above definitions of words, the word in Ephesians 5:18 seems to refer to the process of one getting drunk. One who stays in this state a lot is a drunkard.

The word in Ephesians 5:18 however simply means one who is in the process of becoming softened. Now, all experts agree that you can’t define drunkenness except by degrees. One drink has an effect, which is compounded by two. When one is drunk is subjective based on the definition, and the amount of alcohol it takes to reach the state depends on the individual.

If you want to disregard this let me save you some time. You can find commentators that will simply say the word means drunk or drunkard. As with many things I have read on this topic it seems that the issue is who do you listen to? Often that depends on which side of the issue you want to end up on. I admit I am biased. I don’t want people to drink. Why? I have seen the tremendous amount of harm it causes. I think it is spiritually harming the church.

I personally have tried to avoid overstating my arguments. There is so much confusion on this topic. I will argue strongly that a Christian should not drink. While you can find quarters to defend the idea that God is only condemning the state of drunkenness, I believe there is strong evidence to state that God is here commanding us to stay away from the entire process.

God Bless Your Decision

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Responses

  1. Joe,

    Thanks for all the work you did putting this together. You may already know this, but I am with you on this issue. I decided personally not to drink. You are correct, what little I did try in my late teens / early 20’s did not taste good. Dr. Pepper was much better and still is and so is Welch’s.

    Scott

  2. Hey Joe. I appreciate how much time you have put into this. I can’t say I’m with you 100% on everything except that it does NOT taste good. But I think that is a matter of opinion.
    I was kinda shocked when you went over this in Sunday Morning worship because I think that newcomers/new christians etc. would be very turned off by this. Justin was glad he didn’t have any of his airmen friends with him. As sad as that is I understand how he feels. I think its important on Sunday morning for people to feel welcome and loved. I think it would make a great class series for those who wish to participate. Of course I’m not the preacher. :) I think you have a hard job b/c you want more developed Christians to “dig deeper” but you also don’t want to make new Christians feel attacked or get the wrong impression.
    Tricky subject. I do think you are doing a great job. I just thought I would throw my thoughts out there.

  3. Thanks Rose,

    I appreciate you and Justin too. I do worry about how a sermon will sit with a visitor. I also have many friends in the church who feel this isn’t an issue. Some people thought I was too soft in my approach Sunday. Others, probably thought I was too harsh. Some just don’t agree yet… hoping they will.

    I was trying very hard not to close peoples minds. I want people to really think about this. I really think as Christian we are being dupped by the world to be too worldy.

    My perspective though is that we should do it less for the legality of the law and more for the love of God, and a desire to honor him in my heart.

    I never responded to your post about Harry Potter. Not because I don’t care, but because I am really honestly thinking about how to sort all that out. Where do we draw the line in entertainment.

    Rose I honestly think I need personally to be less in the world. I think if we are honest though we have to admit that it is hard to do. I preach to myself every Sunday.

    Maybe we can have a class. The reason I taught in worship is because we have a lot of this in the church and it is in my view really hurting the church.

    I hope we can all examine our own life.

  4. I think we can get “drunk” on many different things – not simply alcoholic beverage. Let us consider too much food (leads to obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.), too much exercise (spending all your time in the gym), too much TV, too much computer i.e. Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, etc., too much DS, Wii,XBox, too much fishing, too much shopping, too much reading, too much IPod, and the list goes on. Any of these actions in excess can attribute to the same problems that can be the result of excessive drink or drunkeness.

    Many times we create focus on a single issue and I believe we should step back and look at the bigger picture. As Christians we must be cautious of excess in all that we do, work to maintain balance in our lives, and live responsibly keeping the Lord first in our lives, not allowing other things to interfere whether it be alcohol, work, food, tv, etc.

  5. Rose,

    I like that idea. I’ll suggest it to Jim. I have a class on Wednesday that will kinda hit that but from a unique persective. I hope you will attend next quarter on Wednesday night. The book is titled “Will the Real Heretics Please Stand up.” Not sure we will call the class that. Might be confusing.

    Linda,

    I agree Linda. I know I go to excess in the food department. I need to judge myself in that regards.

    I still think the issue remains. All those other questions don’t really alter this question. God doesn’t want us to be good people just more balanced than the world. He calls us to be Holy, seperate, not conformed, to the world.

    If wine is unwise, should I be wise?

    If God say be sober, shouldn’t I be fully sober?

    If God says avoid every form of evil shouldn’t I avoid something which so obviously is associated with evil?

    I am not condemning anyone. I love you all.We are God’s family. I truly believe that Satan has got most of us to drop our standards too low. I am simply pleading with my heart for us to live to an even higher standard.

  6. Yes we do need to control our use of many things that can become “idols” taking our time, money, and effort away from God. But there is a difference between some of these things and certain chemicals that change our bodies chemistry and give us a rush or a high in non-medicinal ways.

    Joe makes a valid point to suggest there are other options available that do not provide a buzz.

    As for food addictions, I agree that we in the US struggle with gluttony (as in selfishly consuming food w/ a disdain for the needy). We also simply overeat which is not gluttony but can be a symptom of it. If we turn to food for comfort or emotional needs (a major factor in obesity) instead of turning to God, then there is a spiritual problem similar to alcoholism or the use of tobacco.

    I suppose what I am suggesting is an individual look at myself and for each of you to examine yourself (2 Cor 13:5). Why do I do what I do? Why do I drink what I drink? Wear what I wear? Go wear I go? Eat what I eat? Etc. And then how does each answer or each activity reflect upon Christ. No one said living for God was easy. We are to present ourselves as a “living SACRIFICE” (Rom 12:1-2). Such may mean giving up what I MAY have the FREEDOM to do, all for the sake of God in Christ.

  7. The first sentence of the last paragraph in my previous post should say, “I suppose what I am suggesting is that as an individual I look at myself and for each of you to examine yourself (2 Cor 13:5).”

  8. Hey Joe,

    Good stuff! Have you ever thought about the contrast of Ephesians 5:18?

    Be not drunk … vs … be filled with/in the spirit

    As you noted the verb is inceptive pointing to a process more than a state. It is like a teeter-totter: when one side is up the other is down. Which side of this do we want? One cannot be a drunkard and spiritual at the same time.

  9. Hey Joe,

    I thought this was a great, accurate, and profitable study on what the Bible says about drinking alcohol.

    The only thing I would have to add to it is that if you do a word study of “sober” in 1 Thess. 5:6-8’s “let us be sober” commands to Christians, the Greek word is “nepho,” which Strong’s Greek lexicon defines as “to abstain from wine” and Vine’s Greek lexicon defines as “to be free from the influence of intoxicants.”

    This only backs up what you brought out about “methusko” in Eph. 5:18. God definitely does not want Christians to partake of intoxicating alcohol, with the sole exception possibly being small quantities for medicinal purposes only (1 Tim. 5:23).

    I’m also glad you preached on this on a Sunday morning. Yes, you ran the risk of offending visitors (and members too, for that matter)…but you run the risk of doing that with every sermon covering any and every topic. It is an assumption that the so-called “lighter topics” have a higher probability of not offending visitors. For example, you could preach on the supposedly non-controversial topic of having faith in Jesus on Sunday morning, but what if one of your visitors is a Jew or Muslim? I guarantee you they’ll be offended if they’re closed-minded. So, will you try to avoid preaching sermons from now on about having faith in Christ? Of course not. Just preach the truth, brother. Preach it in love, but preach it with firmness and unapologetically. Let it offend whom it will offend.

    The church needs to hear the truth about social drinking, and non-Christians need to hear it also. The ones with open hearts (which the parable teaches are the true converts anyway – Luke 8:15) will accept it and obey it; everyone else will either reject outright or come to reject it when times get hard. So just keep on preaching it. Thanks for the work you have done with this. Keep up the good work!

  10. Jon, I may get to that in a future post. I am trying to do a few points of information at a time.

  11. Joe,

    I would encourage your friend Jon to be very careful on the use of scripture to pass judgement on those he does not know. Accusing my wife (an obvious dig in his use of a PORTION of Luke 8) of not being a true convert.

    I recall the Pharisees in Matt 12 getting on to Jesus for not obeying thier interpretation of “keeping the sabbath”. The only evidence I have seen that christians should not consume alchohol has been quoted to me out of the interpretations and opinons of others.

    I have had many good conversations about my beliefs with non-believers over a pint of beer or a cocktail. Conversations I believe would never have happened if those men saw me passing judgement on them for something they enjoy. Something that I can find no evidence is actually wrong. I have been able to share my thoughts with them. I know that members of my church family can confirm that I have brought many of those same friends on visits to the church. I have even had some of them participate in our events.

    I do not now, nor will I ever believe in what I call “hermit crab” christianty. Jesus did not practice it. He found himself in some places during his ministry that the “church” of his day detested him for.

    If God uses me to get a man to heaven and I tell Jesus that we had a conversation about that man’s soul over a pint of beer do you think Jesus will condem me? I think not.

    Justin Langham

  12. Thanks to the text message generation my Luke Eight with a ) behind it above was replace by a smile face with sunglasses on. Sorry.

  13. Justin…I love the Luke 8 face making problem. That is just funny!

    Joe…Thanks for posting this. It is important that we make informed decisions on this matter. Many have strong opinions on both sides of the discussion. I remain uncertain that the Bible forbids all consumption of alcohol – that would forbid yeast rolls. But the Bible is clear about the dangers and destruction it is associated with.

    Christians, if they choose, that alcohol consumption is acceptable must make a lot more decisions than a person that decides that alcohol consumption is forbidden or that they will avoid it.

    If they decide it is acceptable they must decide when, where, and how much is acceptable. In this country they must watch, especially since the 1920s, the effect of alcohol consumption has on their ability to influence others for Christ.

    For the Christian, abstinence is simple – consumption is complicated. Abstinence and encouraging Christians to be abstinent is a good choice. (Notice I said abstinent, not obstinate) :-)

  14. To Justin:

    My comment about Luke 8:15 may have been an “obvious dig” on the comment your wife made in your eyes, but in reality it was simply an observation of what the parable of Luke 8 teaches. Respectfully, I urge you to read the parable yourself. Before verse 15, Jesus listed the various types of responses (represented by the various types of soils) the word of God (the seed) would get. Two of them received the word at first, but later fell away for various reasons, as opposed to the good & honest heart of v. 15. Since they fell away, they didn’t stay converted; thus, my comment about not being a true convert. If you’re offended, know that I meant no offense to anyone, but I stand by my observation.

    Concerning your notion that your evangelistic efforts with some could have never taken place without alcohol being involved, I have 2 questions:

    1. Are you suggesting that without a doubt the only possible way that a Bible study could have taken place with these people is for you to have a beer with them? That they would have walked away if you had gotten a water or an iced tea? I find that hard to believe, & even if that were the case, it seems to me that the problem would be theirs in reality. If they’re going to be turned away by even the suggestion that they would have to repent of something, then are they really that prospective of a convert?

    2. Assuming for the sake of discussion that drinking alcoholic beverages is sinful, does what you’re saying mean that God expects you to sin in order to reach out to souls? Respectfully, should I snort coke to reach out to drug addicts or be a customer to reach out to prostitutes? Obviously not. But since it’s been shown by what both Joe & I have brought out from Scripture that social drinking is sin, then it’s supposed positive attributes of being a drawing factor to some of the lost is irrelevant.

  15. Another thing I would respectfully ask you to consider, Justin, is that when one is shown scripture, and also from several lexiconal authorities what certain words in scripture mean in the original language, then you’re reading more than just opinion.

    If I proposed that lexicon a, b & c showed that the Greek word translated “grace” in scripture literally means “unmerited favor,” then that’s more than just “my interpretation and opinion.” That’s fact.

    Likewise, “methusko” (Eph. 5:18) DOES mark the entire process of getting drunk, & “nepho” (1 Th. 5:6-8) DOES mean abstaining from wine. Those are facts, not opinions.

    It’s now up to us as to whether we will accept them & obey.

  16. Jon,

    I can see that you are a highly educated man. So I will “respectfully” (the term you have chosen to belittle me with repeatedly) bow out of this discussion as it appears you are intent on winning a debate. Debate is not what I am interested in.

    I had answers to your questions all typed out. However I have learned a valuable lesson this evening from Titus 3:9. I realized I was hunting to do the very thing I became angry with you for earlier. Using scripture as Ammo. You wanted to debunk my wife so you hunted a passage out. But I would imagine that with your obious level of education you could do that all night.

    I however will not. I did find a few web pages that disagree with your translations of the above words as well. So I guess since I can’t read Greek I don’t know who I should believe.

    I will however focus my attention from now forward on obeying Mark 16:15 and not in an argument. So I guess you taught me something after all.

    You have a good night Jon. God Bless.

    Justin

  17. Joe,

    I appreciate the balanced research that you have done on this subject. It’s a very important subject in this post modern church. The tone with which you presented the material is positive, direct, and sprinkled throughout with compassion.

    I used to be of the opinion that a Christian can drink alcohol and be alright. I still would not (and you said it in one of your responses) judge any other Christian on this issue. However, given all of the cautions in the Bible to avoid “strong drink,” and because of my own life experiences with those who have become addicted to it, I cannot come to any other conclusion than the one you have so eloquently defended here.

    When someone can tell me how drinking alcohol has aided them in being a good witness for the Lord, or how it has helped them grow in their personal walk with God, I will consider changing my mind. But until I hear compelling, scripture based reasoning, I will remain of this opinion.

    God bless you in your ministry. We live, I believe, in the toughest times in history regarding church/biblical matters. So many Christ followers have become so worldly and we’re fearful to speak against sin, because we don’t want to cause upset in the church.

    Keep up the good work. Stay with the truth, my friend.

  18. I just read Justin’s post from the 20th that speaks of reaching people by not condemning them.

    This is a problem that we have to address in more areas than just drinking but the subject of drinking is a good example of how to treat others when bringing them the truth.

    Jesus never sinned nor did he condone sin. He did go to places where sin occurred and associate with persons that sinned. We are told there is a distinction between the alien sinner and a Christian as far as our association with them.

    1 Cor 5:9-13
    9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:
    10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world.
    11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.
    12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?
    13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.
    KJV

    It would be wrong to think that Jesus made anyone feel comfortable as they condemned their soul to hell by their sin. It is also wrong to think Jesus would take away their choice in the matter. He does as God does in our lives and as we should in the lives of others, namely, present truth in love to the erring person. There need be no condemnation from me, that is between God and the individual. I am not at liberty to sin with the person nor am I allowed to let him just keep sinning without standing for the truth.

    Ezek 33:7-9
    7 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.
    8 When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
    9 Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.
    KJV

    We have a tendency, in our zeal, to try and make the person who is in sin stop sinning. God requires us to warn them but they must change on their own. I must not add to their sin by condoning it in any way but must, in love, rebuke the sin.

    Eph 4:15
    15 But speaking the truth in love , may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
    KJV

    Gal 6:1
    1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault , ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
    KJV

    Col 4:5-6
    5 Walk in wisdom toward them that are without , redeeming the time.
    6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
    KJV

    We must be unspotted by the world while we live in it but can not isolate ourselves from sinners if we wish to reach them.

    James 1:27
    27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
    KJV

    1 Cor 9:19-22
    19 For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.
    20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;
    21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.
    22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.
    KJV

    Our goal should be to be unspotted and show others how to be that way. We need to treat sinners as babes that need milk. It is wrong to try and feed babies a steak dinner. Those in sin must be approached where they are and warned of their error but not clubbed with it. Those people that I have associated with that drink know that I do not. They all know why I don’t drink and I’ve never preached a sermon to them. Some have asked for Bible details others have not. They know by other actions of mine that I strive to follow what God wishes and associate the two. All have been warned by my standing for what is right. The door is open because I don’t take the choice of doing wrong away from them but rather present the option of doing right. God will be their judge and not me. I in no way condone their actions. My doing right shines a light in a dark place. My reputation is intact with those who are “without” but may come into question with my brethren because I associate with sinners. We need to be careful how we judge each other in these cases.

    Matt 9:10-13
    10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.
    11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners ?
    12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
    13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
    KJV

    I don’t think Joe’s lessons were in the wrong spirit for those who drink to come and hear. I think they were balanced and not in an accusatory mode. This is “our turf”, so to speak, and one who would come to visit should expect to hear our side of the story. We have to hear the other side when on “their turf” so all is fair when done in love.

    Worship is about loving God in the way he asks.
    1 John 5:2-3
    2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
    3 For this is the love of God , that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
    KJV
    We should be willing and yearning to hear those commandments even if they point out error in our lives. Coming together is to build up each other. If we just pat each other for the good we are doing and talk about the fun stuff we will not be building but stagnant.

    I’d have to say that I support Joe’s position on the subject of drinking, how he presented it, and that it was a good time and place to present the information. I agree with Justin that we need not condemn those who are wrong but strive to reach them, which may take me to where they are.

  19. I think this boils down to the question of “Do we have to participate in behavior of sinners in order to reach them?”

    I don’t see Jesus doing that and yet I see Him being the greatest teacher of all. His success rate is no better than ours because he had the same weapon we do – the word of God.

    I’ve had several people come to me and say that I’m different than other Christians and were willing to discuss serious Bible topics even when they knew I didn’t drink or do drugs or behave like they did. I’ve had a person say they wanted to stop smoking pot because of my example, I had someone give up dealing drugs because of what they saw in me, I had someone ask me what to do when they committed adultery because they knew I didn’t condone the practices of the world.

    We don’t have to change our behavior to something that is acceptable to the world’s standards in order for them to listen. We do have to change from a “Bible thumper” to a “lover of lost souls”. Taking ourselves out of the picture and allowing the love of God to shine through us, by teaching the truth in love, is how God adds the increase. No program, no personality, no human behavior will be the cause of someone’s salvation. The best I can do is live according to God’s will and place no stumbling block before others.

    1 Cor 3:5-11
    5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
    6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase .
    7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase .
    8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.
    9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.
    10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
    11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
    KJV

    Rom 14:21
    21 It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth , or is offended, or is made weak.
    KJV

    Mark 9:42
    42 And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.
    KJV

    It can be said that in 100% of cases that I will not block a person from going to heaven by not drinking with them. That can not be said when I choose to join them. Those who have not considered the subject from the point that Joe has brought to us have no guideline but themselves. If I join them I condone their behavior rather than encourage them to look at what God thinks.

    I have gone to the store and bought cigarettes for people who smoke, I’ve bought booze for people who drink, guess what the conversation between us was about? Rather than think I joined them in what they were doing they wanted to know why I didn’t. They were not uncomfortable asking me about the subject even though I did not join them. The conversation would not have ever come up had I joined them. I have never had to do what they do to reach them. What they do with the information from that point is between them and God.

    Just because something we do seems to work does not mean that God is behind our action. He accomplishes His purposes whether we behave or not. Did God think it was alright for Rehab to lie in order to save the spies? Was is alright for Abraham to lie about who Sarah was in order to save his life? In God there is no lie yet His will was accomplished despite the inappropriate behavior of these individuals. Can I lie to get something good accomplished since these people did? The ends don’t justify the means.

    Will I send someone to hell for drinking a little (not becoming drunk)? That’s not my job. I can say that it is a better place to argue from when I don’t drink at all rather than when I drink some and this includes reaching the lost especially if they are addicted to drinking.

  20. [...] Does the Bible forbid drinking Alcohol? [...]

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  22. God richly bless you man. This is such a great piece

  23. So glad you posted this. I was researching whether Ephesians 5:18 means “do not get falling-down drunk” or “do not drink an intoxicating beverage.” and found what you had written. This helped! I have always thought it impossible to drink an intoxicating beverage without becoming intoxicated! Let’s be honest. The reason why people drink drug-containing beverages is because they want the effect of the drug in the beverages. I know because this was one of my majors in college.

    If there were no effect, they would not spend the extra money for the drug-containing beverage. Water is cheaper, more refreshing and better for you. If a pleasant taste is what one wants, blackberry lemonade from Ruby Tuesday’s works for me! Or, as someone else posted, Welch’s grape juice! People drink alcoholic beverages for the alcohol!

    If we are going to use the “moderation” argument, is marijuana smoking in “moderation” now okay for Christians if they live in Colorado? The folks there are still trying to figure out how many joints a person can have in them and be okay to drive.Based upon my past experience with marijuana, I’d say NONE!

    The question is: “How do you imbibe a drug without getting drugged?” Though I understand the “moderation” argument, when you try to put it in practice, I don’t see how you can do it without doing exactly what Ephesians 5:18 is says not to do – and, BTW, failing what Ephesians 5:18 says TO do, i.e., turn to God and be filled with His Spirit, instead!

    The way to avoid becoming intoxicated is not to ingest intoxicating substances. If someone needs a drink, maybe what they really need is a fresh filling of God’s wonderful Spirit Who doesn’t cost money, doesn’t kill brain cells, doesn’t impair one’s judgment and brings real joy, not a chemical “happiness” into one’s life.

    Ephesians 5:18 goes on to state the REASON why Christians should not imbibe in alcoholic beverages – because they produce “excess” (KJV), “debauchery” and “dissipation” NIV). The Greek word here is “asotia” which Strongs’s Dictionary says means “unsavedness.” Why in the world would a Christian want to drink something which produces that? Just sayin’


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